My love for books and reading

I love books! I love to read. I grew up in a rural area, that at the time I was a kid, had no cable service, and no Internet service. Plus, we had limited access to television time. What do you do? My pick was grab a book and read. I know, not everyone is interested in reading. My siblings were more interested in playing outside. We had a big patio, and the hills around us to make up games, run, and explore around.

As kids, we were expected to play with each other and help around the house. I grew up with boys closer to my age than girls. I have three brothers, and two sisters. The next girl was born three years after me, and the youngest sister was born five years after me. I was born between two boys. Of course, friends from school lived a little far from me. And the cousins who were girls, also lived far from us. So, I was almost always playing with the boys outside.

Photo by
Amnerys Alvarado/AAA

We played ball, hide and seek, or just running around. Plus, being the oldest girl, I was put in charge of the other kids often. When my sisters were old enough to play, I was always assigned to do chores or assigned to watch the younger siblings. Then it was not that fun when I had to be in charge, because if anything happened to them, it was my responsibility.

From an early age, I was a fast learner. I loved (still do) reading. My Dad brought the newspaper, I’d read it. Any book from school, I’d read it. Any homework given, I’d complete it that same night. Yes, I know, I’m a nerd, I was the “teacher’s pet”, the “know-it-all”. Apparently, I was the only one reading the full book, instead of the chapters assigned for the week.

Photo by Amnerys Alvarado

My paternal grandmother used to call me into her house every time she heard me running around with the boys. I think, in a very old-fashioned way, she didn’t want me playing around with them. I discovered she had a lot of books and magazines. She used to read police and mystery stories (and probably some other stuff I was not allowed to read). I started asking her “Is it okay if I read one?” She’d pick a book for me to read, and tell me “when you get done with that one, ask me and I’ll give you another one.”

Photo from personal album

No, I don’t remember the titles, but I remember the sensation of reading and creating all scenarios in my head. The wonderful thing, for me, was imagining these people and places in my head as I was reading. Having the beautiful landscape of mountains and greenery, plus beautiful blue skies, I could only imagine those characters in all of those scenarios.

I lived too far from town to get books from the library. When my Mom sent us to our room, as punishment, I was actually happy. I’d go read. Then I started writing my own short fiction stories. And I started imagining what would those characters do, and how would I get them to end up together and happy. Unfortunately, I didn’t keep those notebooks.

Orange County Library, Chickasaw Branch
Photo from personal album

Any book I read in school, I’d ask the teachers if it was okay to take home. One book that really impressed me was Don Quijote de la Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes. I read this book in high school, and although I didn’t understand many of the symbolysms when I was reading, I loved the story. This gentleman read so many romances of his time period, that he decided to go on an adventure. As if he were a real knight, he went on to rescue his love interest, his sweet lady Dulcinea. Along the way, in a mix of reality and fantasy, he battled imagined enemies and found himself in situations that made the book to hard to put down.

I read it faster than the rest of the kids in my group. Every discussion during class, I was eager to give the answer. The only throwback was that, one time, the teacher said “anyone knows the answer, other than Nydia”. She didn’t mean it in a bad way, but it made me really aware of how the others saw me. So I started holding back, instead of being a “show off”, which was never my intention. I only wanted to answer the question, as I had read about it and was understanding many things of what the author’s meaning in his writing.

Another book, well set of books, I love are the Harry Potter series written by J.K. Rowling. I came across Harry Potter, as my son was assigned to read it in school, when we moved to Florida. My kids are not readers, they prefer movies or videos. So we read the first book, and I was the one who loved it. And I read and bought each book. I still read them every year.

As soon as the movies were showing in theaters, I watched in awe as these characters and locations came to life. Of course, as I kept reading into the series, I had the image of the actors to follow the story in my head. I’m someone who prefers to read first, then watch the movie. So, of course, I had to read the book first, then go watch the movie. t’s one of the things I enjoy doing. I have all the books and all the movies.

Every time I watch the movies, I have to mention all the differences there are between the movies and the book. For me, it’s always interesting to see how a person takes a book and portrays characters and stories as they have their own vision of what the story should be focusing on. For me, a movie is the Director’s interpretation or his point of view of what the Author meant in the book.

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Auranyd Alvarado/AAA

Since I’ve become a big fan of the Hallmark Channel network, I’ve started reading romance books that have been turned into Hallmark movies. And, yes, I do the same with television movies. I compare the movie with the story in the book. I love most adaptations, but some of them I have to pick between the book and the movie.

I’m mostly interested in reading books about romance stories. As in the movies, I prefer happy endings. I want to know that the main characters in the story are going to find a resolution to their problems, the characters find each other, fall in love, and will be together at the end. It’s not how real life works, but it certainly gives me a good feeling that romance and love still exist, even if it’s in a made-up story.

Yes, there are many books I haven’t read yet. No, I don’t have time to join a book club at this moment. I have a full time job, plus I’m a mom. But I have started making time to read books again. And I have started writing my own romance fiction story. Fiction, because it’s all happening inside my head. As I do my job, when I drive home, as I sit by my window, as I do chores around the house, I imagine these characters and I want them to be together. And I can’t wait to sit and write about it.

Photo by
Amnerys Alvarado/AAA

I don’t know if I’ll ever let others read these stories, or if I’d ever publish them. I’m writing these posts and publishing them for others to read. It’s a good feeling when I get to write and tell people stories. It’s a good feeling when I get such good feedback as I’ve been receiving.

Maybe I’m on the right track. Maybe I’m finally on to do something I really enjoy. I’ll continue reading, and writing. It’s time to enjoy mi tacita de café. Salud!

Versión en español

I'm a Puerto Rican living in Florida. Mom, Blogger, and Writer! Fan of coffee, baseball, books, sweet romance novels and Hallmark movies, and of course, my beautiful Puerto Rico.


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